Golfers Tee Up for First Groundhog Open

By Scott Sarvay
By Maureen Mespell
By Jason Meyers

February 2, 2012 Updated Feb 2, 2012 at 9:37 PM EDT

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (Indiana’s NewsCenter) -The inaugural Groundhog Open Indoor Mini Golf Tournament took place Thursday.

Groundhogs and golf usually don't play well together. That is until Thursday... Groundhog Day 2012. The Downtown Improvement District is thinking outside of the box. By moving the game inside, and they're calling it the Groundhog Open.

Richard Davis from DID says, "February 2nd was a great time to get people out, be thinking about the upcoming golf season but also come out and support the very popular planter program."

You may have seen those planters in downtown Fort Wayne. Each one and its maintenance cost about $1,000 a year. Thursday's 18 holes of putt-putt is trying to raise $20,000 for 20 new planters. With any luck, organizers hope to continue adding in the future.

Event Chairman Karl Bandemer says, "Everybody seems to be real excited about it. And they're having a good time. And so if we can continue doing that, I don't know why we couldn't have the second one! The second annual Groundhog Open next year."

Each hole was designed and sponsored by local businesses, and each golfer made a donation to play. By the looks of some of the golfers, they could have made more by charging per stroke. .

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